Eagles Notes: Mariota’s Stock And Grading the ’14 Draft
MOBILE, Ala. — There seems to be a new Marcus Mariota rumor every day.
The latest has an AFC scout telling NFL.com that he expects Mariota to slide on draft day:
The scoop: “All these teams high in the draft are all going to see the same things on tape with Mariota, and I’ll bet he starts to fall on draft day. Once that happens, (Philadelphia Eagles coach) Chip (Kelly) will mortgage the future to go get him. If he misses on him, (Kelly) can just bolt back to college.” — AFC scout.
It’s worth keeping in mind that this is just one man’s opinion, but there have been multiple suggestions that Mariota might not end up being a top-five pick.
Then again, it’s only January. Coaches are just now getting involved in the draft process, and we still have the combine, official visits and more to get through.
PRAISE FOR BENNETT
The ESPN.com draft crew was impressed with what they saw from Bryan Bennett yesterday:
The first thing we noticed from him Wednesday is that the ball popped off his hand. He looks to have the strongest arm of the six quarterbacks here. He showed really good zip throwing deep outs, and while he was late with a couple of deep balls, he was able to drive the ball vertically. He’s obviously a little raw in terms of his timing and reading progressions, but his mechanics looked good. We really liked how quick he was with his feet and how his feet were married to his eyes as he went through his progressions. He was inconsistent with his accuracy and didn’t see the whole field at times, but remember, this was his first day in town. Some of that is to be expected, and we should see him improve in those areas as the week goes on.
KIPER RE-GRADES 2014 DRAFT
ESPN.com’s Mel Kiper Jr. re-graded the 2014 draft. He has the Eagles at a C+ after giving them a B+ post-draft:
The Eagles did add some early impact, but I thought Marcus Smith was a reach in Round 1, and I think they might agree at this point. Hey, everyone needed pass-rushers and there just weren’t many to be found. But Smith was my No. 85-ranked player going into the draft, and I think the Eagles felt like trading down and adding a little value might have justified the reach. In the end, it was a total redshirt for Smith, who never saw the field.